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Monday, October 15, 2007

Eugene: How to ride in rain

From the Eugene Register-Guard (Oregon), 10.15.07:

Riding in the rain: Good gear and preparation will help you keep cycling through winter
Those who are brave or crazy enough to continue their two-wheeled commutes as the rains begin often suffer what local diehards call "The Willamette Valley Racing Stripe"--an aptly-named strip of road sludge spattered on your front and back.

They battle slick conditions, flooded bike lanes and distracted motorists. But advocates say the benefits--saving on gas, getting exercise and going green--are worth it. "You can ride all year 'round in Eugene," says Lee Shoemaker, the city’s bicycle and pedestrian coordinator. "You just have to have the right kind of gear."

"It takes a certain amount of preparation to be ready to commute and do it efficiently in the rain," says Joe Peck, manager of Paul’s Bicycle Way of Life on Alder Street. (Read more.)
Comprehensive article about wet-weather cycling from Oregon, where they know a fair amount about such things. Among the useful advice offered in the article: breathable rain gear, fenders (!), lights, wider tires, greater caution.

It's impossible to overstate the importance of fenders. In my early days of bike commuting, I learned about the "mud stripe" up the back. As I write on my bike commute tips website, "...the worst feature of wet weather cycling isn't the precipitation that falls down; it's the muck that splashes up."

Also reported on Cyclelicious.
Video: San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.
Visit: What About Weather? - Bike Commute Tips Site
Visit: Paul Dorn's Bike Commuting Tips

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